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65 Surprising Foods That Start With C: Get Quiz Ready!

Who can list 65 foods that start with C off the top of their head?

I know I can’t but this list is sure to help prompt you! I’ve gone through a whole load of fruits, veggies, processed food, meals, and snacks to find 65 that will crush your quiz competition.

Surprising Foods That Start With C |  Hurry The Food Up

So what counts as food you may ask? Well, it is as obvious as it sounds. It’s anything you can eat and in this case, all foods starting with C. But I’m going to break it up for you.

There are categories including whole foods – those natural foods that come from the Earth. Processed foods – these may have gone through some sort of manufacturing process.

Meals – so any dishes (I bet you can already think of some) that begin with a C. And snacks – those naughty little treats that we all know and love.

This list is going to give you so many options for the next time you get asked what foods start with C.

So let’s not waste any more time and get down to business.

Here it is an awesome list of 65 foods beginning with C!

To start with we’re hitting up those whole foods, fresh fruit, and veg, and there are plenty of them so get your memory at the ready.

Whole foods


The humble cabbage it’s a good source of vitamin K, C, and dietary fiber.

Cabbages come in green, white, and red (purple) varieties and we humans have been eating them since Roman times – now that’s a lot of methane!

Raw cabbage is great in coleslaw.

Like cauliflower, it is part of the Brassica oleracea family.


The cainito, also called a star apple due to the star-shaped inner flesh, is grown throughout the tropics.

It is a dessert fruit, and infusions made with the leaves are said to help against diabetes.

The Latin name is Chrysophyllum cainito.

Cainitos on the straw tile. Next to it, there are two halves of cainitos | Hurry The Food Up


This fruit is also called a Calamondin, or Philippine lemon. Its flesh tastes sour but its peel is said to have a sweet taste.

It is rich in vitamin C and it can be used to make marmalade in the same way as an orange. It needs to be warm to grow successfully.

The scientific name is Citrus × microcarpa.

Fresh whole and pieces of calamansies | Hurry The Food Up

Canary Melon

A melon that looks like a honeydew melon. It’s called the canary melon due to its bright yellow color which is like a canary. The canary melon has a tangier taste. It is common in parts of Asia and North Africa.

The Latin name is Cucumis melo like cantaloupe.


Canistel fruit is rounded in shape similar to a nectarine and has bright yellow skin. It is a fruit native to areas such as southern Mexico and El Salvador.

Its flesh has a creamy mousse-like texture when it’s at its best, which is said to taste like an egg custard! (This is also how it gets its nickname egg fruit).

Its scientific name is Pouteria campechiana.

Canistels on the straw surface | Hurry The Food Up


Part of the musk melon family, cantaloupe has pale green textured skin and bright orange flesh. A popular way to eat it is wrapped in salty prosciutto as antipasti.

The skin of the cantaloupe is prone to carrying bacteria like Salmonella so it’s really important to scrub it clean before eating (hands up who never knew that until now!).

The Latin name is Cucumis melo.

Fresh cantaloupes on the wooden surface | Hurry The Food Up

Cape Gooseberry

Although different to a common gooseberry it is usually made into fruit-based jams, chutneys, pies, and puddings.

It’s loosely related to the same family as the tomato and eggplant and is recorded in South America as far back as the Inca Empire!

The scientific name is Physalis peruviana.


Caper grows on a white and pink flowering plant. Other parts of the caper bush are used in making medicine and cosmetics, it is mainly found in Mediterranean countries.

Its species name is Capparis spinosa.

Wooden spoon with capers | Hurry The Food Up


Caqui is a tropical fruit that is grown in the Indo-China, Malaysian, and Northern Australian regions.

Parts of the plant are used for herbal medicine and the orange-red fruit is reported to be very tasty.

Its scientific name is Manilkara kauki.


Caraway seeds are also commonly known as meridian fennel and Persian cumin (why can’t they stick to one name hey!).

The leaves are feathery similar to the ones that grow from a carrot.

For their small size caraway seeds are actually nutrient-rich, and are especially high in iron, phosphorus, and zinc.

Its species name is Carum carvi.

Caraway seeds on the wooden dishes | Hurry The Food Up


This root vegetable is mild in flavor and a key ingredient in lots of dishes around the world. But did you know they aren’t just orange in colour.

They also come in white, yellow, purple, black, and red!

Carrots have numerous health benefits including being a rich source of beta-carotene, however, they don’t actually help you see in the dark unless you already have a vitamin A deficiency.

The species’ name is Daucus carota.


Cashew nuts are actually the seed of the cashew fruit, which grows on the cashew tree. The nuts can be eaten as it is or ground into flour or butter. They are used a lot in South Asian cuisine.

The cashew apple can be eaten raw, or cooked into curries as well as made into alcoholic drinks.

The scientific name is Anacardium occidentale.


The casimiroa fruit has an inedible green-yellow skin and a white smooth flesh that is similar in texture to an avocado. It originated in Mexico.

It can have up to five seeds inside and these are said to have narcotic properties!

The scientific name is Casimiroa edulis.


Cassabananas grow up to 60cm in length! Although classed as the fruit they are part of the cucumber family and are indigenous to the tropical areas of South America.

Whereas the mature fruit can be eaten raw or made into preserves, the immature fruit is often cooked as a vegetable.

The scientific name is Sicana odorifera.


Cassava is a major staple food in the developing world and cassava starch is probably more commonly recognized as tapioca which is used all over in cooking.

It is the third biggest source of carbohydrates next to maize and rice in the tropics. It shouldn’t be eaten raw as It’s toxic when uncooked, and contains cyanide!

Its species name is Manihot esculenta.

Some pieces of cassavas. Next it there are a plate and spoon with ground cassava | Hurry The Food Up


Catsear gets its name as it apparently resembles a cat’s ear, and looks a lot like the common dandelion. However, all parts of this flower are edible.

It can be mixed into salads, steamed, or put in stir-frys but it is quite bland in taste on its own.

Interestingly, its root can also be roasted and ground to make a coffee substitute!

Its scientific name is Hypochaeris radicata.

Catsear's flowers and buds | Hurry The Food Up

Cattley Guava

This fruit is named after the English horticulturist William Cattley. It comes in a variety of different colors from yellow to dark purple and red.

The whole fruit is edible although it gives a sweeter taste with the skin removed. The leaves can also be brewed for tea.

The Latin name is Psidium cattleyanum.


You can get cauliflowers in white, green, yellow, and purple! They are made of 92% water in their raw state and provide us with over half of your daily vitamin C needs.

They are part of the same family as lots of familiar vegetables, including broccoli, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts among others. Cauliflower is often used as a gluten-free alternative to rice.

The scientific name is Brassica oleracea.


The cawesh tree is found in Central America. The fruit from this tree is similar to an orange in size however it doesn’t taste like one.

It is actually reported to have a creamy banana-pineapple flavor and it takes four years from seed for it to actually produce any fruit.

The scientific name is Annona scleroderma.

Fresh cawesh | Hurry The Food Up


Celeriac looks similar to a turnip. It can be used in traditional Chinese medicine as it contains a compound called apigenin which has anti-inflammatory properties.

It can be roasted, stewed, and mashed. The bulb is most commonly eaten although the leaves are also full of flavor and used in fine dining.

The Latin name is Apium graveolens.


Celery is a marshland plant that has long fibrous stalks. The leaves can also be eaten and celery seeds are used as a spice in dishes.

They can be ground down to make celery salt, and in 2019 it was popular to drink celery juice if you wanted to detox.

Celery, or Apium graveolens, is 95% water so it’s a great snack choice when watching your weight.


Celtuce is actually known as stem lettuce, celery lettuce, or asparagus lettuce. It’s well-used all over mainland China and Taiwan.

The large leaves and stems can be eaten raw in salads or pickled, grilled, and roasted. It also has an interesting smoky aftertaste.

Its species name is Lactuca sativa.


This small fruit is yellow in color and has smooth skin like a tomato. It is generally found in Central America and the Caribbean.

In rural Panama it is used for a popular dessert, and elsewhere in preparation for carbonated drinks, ice cream, and juice. In Mexico, it is made into ice lollies and sorbet.

The scientific name is Byrsonima crassifolia.

Fresh ripe changunga | Hurry The Food Up


Not to be confused with a cherry plum, cherries come in two types sweet and sour. Their peak season is December and they are often associated with Christmas.

This fruit is especially yummy in jams and pies and it is also great when it’s raw.

The scientific name is Prunus avium.

Cherry Plum

Cherry plums are naturalized to the British Isles and other parts of North America, and Western Asia. It is a popular ornamental tree with dark purple fruit which makes a really pretty jam.

The plums are a popular ingredient in Georgian cuisine.

Its Latin name is Prunus cerasifera.


The chickpea is really high in protein so they’re an excellent choice for vegetarians and vegans. It is used in lots of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes. It is the main ingredient in hummus which is super tasty.

Chickpea flour can be used to make a gluten-free alternative to durum wheat pasta.

The scientific name for it is Cicer arietinum.

Big wooden spoon with chickpea. Next it a bunch of chickpea | Hurry The Food Up


Its scientific name of Stellaria sounds much more pretty than stitchwort which is another name for the flowering plant chickweed.

It’s eaten raw in salads mainly, but it is also a favored treat of finches and other seed-eating birds.

There are over 150 species under the genus of Stellaria.


Chicory has beautiful bright blue flowers. Its leaves are mainly used for salads and chicory root is a good source of dietary fiber.

Common chicory has lots of different names including horseweed, ragged sailors, and wild bachelor’s buttons. The whole perennial plant is edible and it’s also used in traditional medicine.

Its species name is Cichorium intybus.

Chili pepper

Chilli peppers, similarly to bell peppers, are under the capsicum family – which is closely related to Nightshade. Although eaten all around the world, they originated in Mexico.

Common chili pepper varieties include cayenne peppers and jalapenos. They give different levels of spice and heat when eaten.

Here’s an interesting fact for you! It is said that birds can’t feel the spiciness of chili peppers so they could eat the hottest ones without even flinching!

Chinese artichoke

This root vegetable is found mainly in Chinese or Japanese cooking and can be eaten raw, dried, pickled, or cooked.

It is used in Chinese medicine to help treat colds and pneumonia The leaves can also be dried and used for tea.

Its species name is Stachys affinis.

A handful of chinese artichoke is on the wooden surface | Hurry The Food Up

Chinese ginger

Chinese ginger is also called fingerroot as it looks like a bunch of wrinkly fingers. It is indigenous to regions like Malaysia and Indonesia.

It tends to be used in cooking and traditional medicine. It is also the common ingredient in fermented soya bean cake, called tempah.

Its Latin name is Boesenbergia rotunda.


Chives belong to the Amaryllidaceae family. They are related to the onion, spring onion, and shallots, and it is a favored herb in many parts of Europe and the Americas.

Interestingly, they can repel insects, although, the flowers actually attract bees. Chive comes from the French word cive, which comes from the Latin word cepa, which means onion.

Its species name is Allium schoenoprasum.

Fresh green chives | Hurry The Food Up


Chokeberry leaves are a dark green color, while the berries are almost black in colour. They are a favourite of birds who tend to eat the berries. They are quite sour in their raw form but sweeten with sugar in recipes.

The scientific name for them is Aronia melanocarpa.

A branch of chokeberry in the wooden bowl. Next to it a glass jar full of chokeberries | Hurry The Food Up


The citron is similar to a lemon but with thick, rough skin. It is said to be the original lemon from which the other varieties developed.

It is mainly used in Asian cuisine and also for traditional medicine, perfume, and religious rituals.

The Latin name is Citrus medica.


A popular fruit in Christmas stockings, clementines are easy peelers like tangerines. They can be separated into 7-14 segments and the name comes from the French missionary Clement Rodier.

They are 87% water and they are a great way to get 59% of your RDI of vitamin C. The scientific name is Citrus × clementina.


This herbaceous perennial is native to cool regions such as Scandinavian countries. Cloudberries look like golden blackberries in appearance.

Before they’re ripe the berries can have a tart flavor. They are best eaten when over-ripe. In Finland, cloudberries are used to make a traditional liqueur.

The scientific name is Rubus chamaemorus.

Fresh cloudberries in the wooden dish | Hurry The Food Up

Cocky Apple

This quince-like fruit originated in Australia. In fact, years ago indigenous Australians found many uses for the tree, including boiling the bark to make an antiseptic.

It would be used to treat cuts and they would place heated leaves over mosquito bites to relieve irritation.

Its Latin name is Planchonia careya.


Albeit a bit creepy, the Portuguese word coco means head or skull, which is where the name coconut came from.

Apart from being a great addition to a Bounty chocolate bar in the UK, coconut flesh and coconut milk are used in several different ways.

Its found in products such as food (flour, butter, oil), cosmetics, and soap. You can even drink coconut water. Coconuts can cause anaphylaxis so watch out if you’re allergic.

The scientific name is Cocos nucifera.


The seeds of the coffea plant are the coffee beans we know and love that are full of caffiene and are roasted and then brewed into the drink that gets a lot of us through the day.

One of the most popular species is coffea arabica which produces 80% of the world’s coffee beans.

The plant is one of the world’s most valuable trading commodity crops.


Although it sounds like a bean this bush holds a berry that is native to California in the United States and some areas of Mexico.

However, if you eat it raw, this fruit can make you sick, it is mainly used these days to make a coffee substitute.

The scientific name is Frangula californica.

Collard greens

Collard is a leafy green vegetable similar to cabbage and kale. It has been eaten commonly in the southern United States and parts of Africa for the last 2000 years going back to Ancient Greek.

It is also in the Brassica oleracea family.

Leaves of collard greens on the wooden surface | Hurry The Food Up

Common bean

Common beans come in pods. They are also known as French beans and are grown all over the world. They are rich in iron, folate, and vitamin B6 among other nutrients and they’re also full of fiber.

They’re super filling so a great addition to your diet if you’re goal is weight loss. Green beans can be steamed, baked in casseroles, boiled, and stir-fried so they’re great in lots of meals.

Its species name is Phaseolus vulgaris.


Corn is also known as maize and it came originally from southern Mexico. It is a staple cereal grain and production figures have surpassed that of rice and wheat around the world.

It has many uses including animal feed, corn syrup, corn starch, sweet corn, popcorn, and even biofuel to name a few!
Corn comes in yellow, white, and variegated varieties.

Its species name is Zea mays.

Corn cobs on the wooden surface | Hurry The Food Up

Corn salad

Corn salad is more commonly recognized as Lamb’s Lettuce. It didn’t go into grocery stores until the 1980s, although it had been around for many years before that.

This leafy vegetable has a nutty flavor and it’s best to pick it before its starts to flower.

Its species name is Valerianella locusta.


Courgettes are also called zucchinis. They come as green, yellow, and stripey veg. The flowers of the courgette plant are also edible and are sometimes used to garnish a dish.

It has a mild flavor and can be spiralized into noodles, grilled into salads, blitzed into soup, or baked into bread.

Its species name is Cucurbita pepo.


Cranberries are little fruit that grows on a tree. You probably best know them as your favorite Christmas side dish cranberry sauce as they have a nice sweet flavor.

Although there is a myth that they help with urinary tract infections studies aren’t conclusive.

The scientific name is Vaccinium macrocarpon.

Bowl and cup are full of cranberries | Hurry The Food Up


The word cress comes from the old Germanic cresso for sharp and spicy. It’s an edible plant that can grow in most places and goes well with eggs in sandwiches.

On the Arabian Peninsula cress seeds are mixed with custard to make a hot drink.

Its species name is Lepidium sativum.


Crowberries grow across the Northern Hemisphere in low-lying bushes. Although they can be dried they aren’t great when eaten raw and can cause headaches.

They are a popular choice for making wine in Scandinavia.

The scientific name is Empetrum nigrum.


Although often eaten in salads cucumbers are officially classed as a fruit. They grow from a vine plant and also grow a flower on the end of them like courgettes.

They have a high water level. Cucumbers have been eaten as far back as the Roman Empire, where Emperor Tiberius is said to have had one every day.

Its species name is Cucumis sativus.


Ok I know you might think this fruit starts with a K usually, but this is also an accepted spelling in Australian English (so I’m not cheating).

They like the hot weather and although they look like oranges they can be eaten with the skin on and go well with a fruit salad.

The scientific name is Fortunella spp.

Fresh cumquat | Hurry The Food Up

Custard Apple

The custard apple tree grows best in the tropics. Its fruit varies in shape and taste. While some can be bitter and repulsive, some can taste like custard, hence the name.

It is used to make popular foods like puddings, ice creams, and juices although it can also be eaten raw.

The scientific name is Annona reticulata.

Processed foods

This list of foods starting with C can easily be found around your local store but unlike the whole foods I’ve mentioned have been through some kind of factory process.


Hard cheese comes in many varieties, giving different flavors but cheddar is one of the most popular. Cheese is used throughout the developed world and is a dairy product which is high in protein.

It can, however, also be high in fat so be careful not to eat too much!

Cheese can be eaten sliced, grated or melted, and is a popular topping on many dishes including pizza, pasta, baked potatoes, and enchiladas, the list could go on.

Cottage cheese

Cottage cheese is made from curdled milk and can also be known as curds and whey which may sound familiar as it’s mentioned in the traditional nursery rhyme Little Miss Muffet.

So if you ever wondered what she was eating it was a bowl of cottage cheese (nice!). It is low in fat and high in protein making it a great option for those on a diet.

Wooden bowl with cottage cheese in it, next to it there is a wooden spoon | Hurry The Food Up


Cream is the top layer of milk that is highest in fat and skimmed off the top before homogenization.

It comes in different thicknesses depending on its saturated fat content, usually starting with single cream and going to extra thick or heavy cream. It can be whipped into frosting or desserts.

It also comes in a sour variety which can be used in dishes like chili con carne.

Cream Cheese

Cream cheese is a soft blendable cheese with a mild flavor, which can be spread on bread or mixed into savory dishes like pasta, or put into desserts.

It first began production in the USA in 1873. It is easy to make cream cheese at home using various recipes.

Snacks starting with C

These are also processed foods but I’ve put them in a seperate category as popular snacks that should easily recognise and easily be able to remember.


Cake comes in lots of delicious flavours from chocolate to red velvet, carrot, to lemon and many more. Recipes vary but consist mostly of basic ingredients like flour, eggs, sugar, and butter in varying quantities.

Cakes can be made at home and commercially and many people take part in cake competitions where the best cake is judged. Birthday cakes are a traditional treat to celebrate the day someone was born.

They can also come in little individual sizes called cupcakes.

What’s you favourite cake?


Chips, known in the US and Canada as fries (or French fries), are made from potatoes. They are cut into little finger sized pieces and then usually baked or fried.

They usually accompany a dish such as the popular Great British tradition of fish and chips.

They taste really nice with salt and vinegar on them although they can also be bought in the shops coated in spices or with the skin left on.


Chocolate is a favourite treat of many people. It is made from the cocoa bean (or cacao) and comes in milk, dark and white varieties traditionally. In WWII chocolate was a rarety for many people as it was rationed.

Chocolate can be formed into bars, drops, or buttons. It can coat other items like ice cream, rasins, honeycomb or brazil nuts for example and it melts quite quickly in heat so it’s not great in hot climates.

Bars of chocolate lie on the table  | Hurry The Food Up


Cookies are like a large biscuit and often have fillings like chocolate chips, rasisins and candy among other things. Cookies are crisp in texture and are a popular treat in the developed world.

They seem to have had their beginnings in Persia as early as 7 AD. And they even reported gingerbread in the court of Elizabeth I so these treats have been popular for a while!


Crisps, also called chips in the USA, are thinly sliced potatoes which have then been baked or fried usually in sunflower oil. They come in many different flavours like the traditional ready salted, salt and vinegar and cheese and onion.

Crisps are usually eaten as a snack or as part of lunch with a sandwich. They are also a popular addition to children’s lunchboxes.

Meals and desserts beginning with a letter C

This is a collection of main meals and desserts that start with a C. This list is by no means complete, I wonder if you can think of anymore to add.


Chickens are eaten throughout the world by meat eaters. They can be roasted for a traditional British Sunday lunch, or added to many other meals like in chicken pot pie. Fried chicken is a popular junk food.

Sadly over many year chickens have been caged and farmed in terrible conditions, but luckily many restrictions have come in over time and a lot of people now prefer to purchase meat from chickens that have been free-ranged, or not caged.

Chow Mein

Chow mein is a Chinese dish which is very popular as a UK takeaway dish.

It consists of noodles, bean sprouts, cabbage and corn and often a source of protein such as chicken, pork, or prawn (although you could also order a vegetable chow mein) which is then covered in sauce.

It is a savoury and usually salty dish, eaten alongside other Chinese takeaway dishes and with often prawn crackers on the side.

Black plate with chow-mein | Hurry The Food Up

Cinnamon Roll

A cinnamon roll is a sweet pastry made from enriched dough and formed in a swirl. It is found mainly in Northern Europe and North America.

In the middle of the swirl is usually a mixture made from butter, cinnamon and sugar and sometimes rasins.

In Scandinavia it is often eaten with coffee and friends in a tradition called Fika, and in the US it is usually eaten for breakfast or dessert and covered in cream cheese or fondant icing.

Black pan with cinnamon rolls in it | Hurry The Food Up

Clam Chowder

A traditional dish from North America, clam chowder is any chowder soup that contains clams. Clams were an easy harvest which is why they were often chosen back when it was invented as a dish for the first time.

It also contains potatoes, celery, onion and salt pork. The main popular regional varieties are New England, Rhode Island and Manhatten clam chowder.

Crème brûlée

This is a dessert made of a thick custard topped with caramlised sugar. It is usually torched after baking. It is also sometimes called ‘burnt cream’.

It is traditionally vanilla in flavour although other flavors can be found in French cuisine.

I hope you’ve really enjoyed this list! Did you guess all of them or can you give me any more to add to the list down in the comments?

I also made a seperate list of vegetables starting with C and fruit starting with C if they will help you even further.

And if this list of foods beginning with C isn’t enough for your knowledge, I’ve also got a list of foods starting with F and foods starting with the letter E too!

If you think this list could help a friend then please share it!

65 Surprising Foods That Start With C: Get Quiz Ready!
5 from 1 vote
Need to brush up for a pub quiz or just love to learn use this list of 65 foods beginning with a C to beat everyone!


Whole Foods

  • Cabbage
  • Cainito
  • Calamansi
  • Canary Melon
  • Canistel
  • Cantaloupe
  • Cape Gooseberry
  • Caper
  • Caqui
  • Caraway
  • Carrot
  • Cashew
  • Casimiroa
  • Cassabanana
  • Cassava
  • Catsear
  • Cattley Guava
  • Cauliflower
  • Cawesh
  • Celeriac
  • Celery
  • Celtuce
  • Changunga
  • Cherry
  • Cherry Plum
  • Chickpea
  • Chickweed
  • Chicory
  • Chili pepper
  • Chinese artichoke
  • Chinese ginger
  • Chives
  • Chokeberry
  • Citron
  • Clementine
  • Cloudberry
  • Cocky Apple
  • Coconut
  • Coffea
  • Coffeeberry
  • Collard greens
  • Common bean
  • Corn
  • Corn salad
  • Courgette
  • Cranberry
  • Cress
  • Crowberry
  • Cucumber
  • Cumquat
  • Custard Apple

Processed Foods

  • Cheese
  • Cottage cheese
  • Cream
  • Cream Cheese

Snacks starting with C

  • Cake
  • Chips
  • Chocolate
  • Cookies
  • Crisps

Meals and desserts beginning with a letter C

  • Chicken
  • Chow Mein
  • Cinnamon Roll
  • Clam Chowder 
  • Crème brûlée
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